Thursday, December 17, 2015

De Atramentis Frankincense: Ink Review

Hi everybody! Madigan here, reviewing the fantastic De Atramentis Frankincense ink. If you are looking for an appropriately named ink for the Christmas season, you can't get much better than this! It is also featured in our Merry & Bright Ink Drop which is what got me interested.

I'm going to be honest here, despite having been in countless nativity plays as a child, I had only the vaguest idea of what Frankincense is. It was something really expensive that smelled good?! So like any normal adult in this day and age, I googled it. I found that it's the aromatic resin of a tree found in the middle east. According to pictures, the resin is more of an orangey-brown color, so I'm not sure where the hue of this ink comes from. The ink does, however, have a lovely aroma and at $14.95, is not prohibitively expensive.

I haven't extensively used gray or scented ink before, so I was excited to give this a whirl! I was pleasantly surprised at every turn. Here is a little bit about De Atramentis Frankincense:

Supplies Used:

Smear Test (Dry Time):
  • Medium- This ink was completely dry in 30 seconds. No smudging, no movement, no nothing! Since I tend to use wetter inks, this was a pleasant surprise. 

Drip Test (Water Resistance):
  • Medium/High- While this ink isn't classified as "water resistant" it sure is good at resisting water! It barely smeared at all when I applied water. Pretty impressive and again, really unexpected.

  • Medium- There was a difference between the first and second swab, but the second and third looked the same.

Ease of Cleaning:
  • Easy-Disappeared quickly from the nibs and feed when I cleaned it.

  • Medium- A lovely amount of gentle shading! It went from a light grey to a darker shade, even with a medium nib. Impressive!

  • Medium- It flowed well from the pen, not too heavy but not too light. A solid medium. 

Unique Characteristics

  • Scent- This ink has a spicy evergreen scent. You can smell it out of the bottle but I couldn't really smell it at all while writing with it.

Packaging and Aesthetics:

  • 35ml glass bottle with  2ml ink samples also available.  
  • Utilitarian bottle that is stand alone. No box included.
  • Wide necked bottle makes it easy to fill your pen!


This is a really great ink! I usually go for much brighter colors when writing, but I like this mellow shade of gray. The flow was great and the smell an added bonus. Because of the scent, I'd probably keep this out of the office or school. It'd be great to use on letters or for journaling, however.

You can find De Atramentis Frankincense in a 35ml bottle at Gouletpens.com for $14.95. You can also try it out in this month's Ink Drop or in a 2ml ink sample for $1.25.

Do you like to use scented inks? Let me know in the comments below!

Write on,

1 comment:

  1. Burning frankincense produces that lovely "church incense" sort of scent, and lots of gray smoke. I'll bet the smoke is what inspired that color.


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